Current News

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) – A federal judge won't decide until later this year whether to shut down the Dakota Access oil pipeline while federal officials do more environmental review.

Judge James Boasberg on Wednesday approved a schedule under which both sides in an ongoing lawsuit over the pipeline will submit written arguments on the matter in July and August.

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) – A man who is helping lead a social media campaign in support of the University of North Dakota's retired Fighting Sioux nickname says a U.S. Supreme Court ruling in an unrelated case offers hope, but a UND spokesman says there's no comparison.

Justices on Monday struck down part of a law that bans offensive trademarks, saying that barring disparaging terms infringes on free speech rights. The ruling came in a case involving an Asian-American rock band called the Slants, but it could give a boost to the NFL's Washington [mascot] in their separate legal fight over the team name.

UND's retired nickname is no longer being contested in the courts, but it's still a topic of public discussion five years later and somewhat similar to the [mascot] debate – opponents consider the moniker racist while supporters say it honors American Indians.

MASKWACIS, Alberta (AP) – A homeless Indigenous woman, victim of a stabbing and sexual assault, was forced to testify in shackles, then jailed in a cell alongside that of her attacker in a case that has roused indignation in Canada about the treatment of the people it calls the First Nations.

The Alberta provincial justice minister has launched two investigations, the chief judge of the Provincial Court of Alberta is reviewing the decision to detain the woman and activists are denouncing a legal system they say is chronically unfair to the indigenous.

"They would never do that to a white person. I don't even think they would do it to a black person," said Rick Lightning, an indigenous elder in Maskwacis, a community south of Edmonton where the woman grew up. "Then why is it OK to do it to an Indian?"

It was usually as dark as the inside of a crypt when we stumbled out of our bunk beds to the tune of the clanging bell that was shaken vigorously by the Jesuit prefect.

The dormitory was very chilly on those winter mornings in the 1940s. A coal-burning furnace heated the dorm far, far away from the main building and the steam heaters only felt warm if you touched them.

We’d wash up in cold basins of water at the trough that served as a sink. And then we hustled down to the “Little Boys Gym” and lined up for roll call. When we were all accounted for, we fell into company ranks and marched off to church. We did this seven days a week, but the routine changed on Sundays.

WASHINGTON (AP) - The Washington R*dsk*ns aren't in the clear with their team name just yet, even after the Supreme Court ruled Monday that the government can't block trademarks on the basis that they're offensive.

Supreme Court precedent may help the club in its ongoing legal battle, but the fight over the team moniker will continue in social and business realms. Washington, the Cleveland Indians with their "Chief Wahoo" logo and other professional and college organizations featuring Native American nicknames and mascots cannot be censored by the U.S. government, but that doesn't take the pressure off.

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) - President Donald Trump won't be added as a defendant in a lawsuit over the disputed Dakota Access oil pipeline that he pushed to completion, a federal judge announced as one of the conditions of allowing a group of Sioux tribal members to intervene in the case.

The order Monday by U.S. District Judge James Boasberg eliminates a possible complication to a case that has lingered almost a year. American Indian and environmental activists plan a rally Wednesday outside the federal courthouse in Washington, D.C., as Boasberg oversees an unrelated hearing in the case.

MADISON, Wis. (AP) - An environmental group and the Ho-Chunk Nation are challenging a proposed sand plant's wetlands permit.

Meteor Timber wants to build a sand drying plant in Monroe County and a sand mine in neighboring Jackson County. The project would eliminate 16.6 wetland acres. The state Department of Natural Resources granted the company a permit to fill the 16 wetland acres in May.

HACKENSACK, N.J. (AP) - A judge struck down a court order that temporarily barred a Native American tribe in New Jersey from erecting teepees.

Superior Court Judge Charles Powers Jr. found Mahwah failed to prove the Ramapough Lenape Nation's demonstrated "imminent and irreparable harm." But he also dismissed the tribe's argument that it is entitled to relief from the township's zoning law because it has freedom of religion.

Mahwah can enforce zoning laws and regulations, Judge Powers wrote.

HONOLULU (AP) – No modern navigation instrumentation guided a Polynesian voyaging canoe as it followed the horizon during a three-year journey around the globe.

About a dozen crewmembers for each leg of the voyage relied only on their understanding of nature's cues – ocean swells, stars, wind, birds– and their own naau, or gut, to sail across about 40,000 nautical miles (74,000 kilometers) to 19 countries, spreading a message of malama honua: Caring for the earth.

LARAMIE, Wyo. (AP) – The University of Wyoming is warning audiences about offensive material in a traveling musical after Native American high school students walked out of a performance of "The Fantasticks."

The walkout happened Thursday during intermission, The Laramie Boomerang reported. It wasn't clear how many students attending the Native American Summer Institute at the campus in Laramie walked out of the show.